PHP for Toasters and Everything Else


Comments are closed.

This was a great talk and something that surprised everybody. Robert Cohn brought with him a robotic gadget he created that can make art with a slice of bread, a birthday candle, and a little bit of ingenuity.

The talk started with his gadget sitting on a table to the left of the podium. It was made of cardboard boxes, wires, bread boards, circuits, a controller, a bent coat hanger. We waited for the presentation to end before seeing it work. This made it exciting.

Robert has a nice way of presenting in a friendly easy to follow manner. He explained how Internet of Things (IoT) is a new and exciting industry that is catching the eye of big companies like Intel. You can make almost anything you can dream of. Creative developers can use these tools to jump into this hobby with low cost parts, 3d printing, and a little imagination.

He gave good resources and where to buy parts. He spoke about the explosion of 3d printing, and how developers can use PHP and other languages on these tiny miniature computers. He also gave us some background on controllers like Arduino and Raspberry Pi and Intel's new controller. He also covered a bit of Intel XDK which is an IDE for writing phone/tablet apps in HTML5.

Then the demo started. He put a single slice of white toast on top of this gadget. He lit the candle, we sang happy birthday, he pressed a button on a web interface. Then the machine started to move the candle back and forth while burning an image into the bread.

I was stunned.